Newly established Fiat Chrysler Automobiles just unveiled its next five-years business plans amid investor concern for the execution and necessary funding, and the automaker is mostly berated for its Asian lack of success.
According to analysts, if the ambitious global plan would have any change of success, it would only be if the world’s seventh largest auto group manages to increase its presence significantly in Asia – and by that it means China especially.
Still, the track record so far in the world’s largest single market prompts specialists to cast doubts on the ability to deliver on the promises. Newly merged, Fiat Chrysler has been present in China for a while, but currently its market share for both China and the whole Asia-Pacific is just a meager 0.6%.
“Not being present in Asia means being outside half of the global car market,” said Andrea Giuricin, a transport analyst at Bicocca University in Milan, Italy. “That’s a very big problem for Fiat.”
“It’s not about being pessimistic, it’s about being realistic,” adds Namrita Chow, an analyst at IHS Automotive. “China is a very complicated market and there are many strong existing players.”
FCA so far has been heavily relying on just three markets: US, Europe and Brazil, with the core European region still shy on its recovery from the six years slump in demand and some key emerging markets – including Brazil – showing signs of weakness.
Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne announced Asia as a pillar of the turnaround plan unveiled on Tuesday, with the company focused on China to build more Fiats and introduce local manufacture of the Jeep unit.